Official unemployment rates may be low, but they don’t reflect the number of people out of the workforce, underemployed or lacking the skills to get good jobs. “We need to disaggregate these numbers,” LISC CEO Maurice Jones said in a front page article in The Guardian newspaper. By 2025, the US will have 16 million ‘middle skill’ positions in need of workers, Jones explained, noting “[t]hat’s not going to happen organically.” Training and connections to opportunity are imperative to lift everyone’s boat.
This is the story of Michael Elliot, who was homeless and fighting cancer when his life took a sharp turn for the better. Through a unique partnership with ProMedica Health in Toledo, where he was receiving treatment, Elliot was introduced to a LISC Financial Opportunity Center. There, he worked with a financial coach, who helped him secure a safe, affordable apartment and even begin saving money—all within a few months. Said Elliot, “It’s the greatest thing in the world that I have a place to call home.”
LISC has invested deeply in the health and wellbeing of people in the places where we work for 40 years. But we’re upping the ante. President and CEO Maurice Jones calls partners to join us in upending health disparities through tailored investments in communities, and designing a plan to assess the health outcomes of our broad work in economic development, housing, safety and financial stability.
After years of guiding charter school facilities development, LISC has bottled its knowledge in a new platform: SchoolBuild: From Idea to Construction. SchoolBuild is an essential online resource to support charter school leaders as they dig into the process of creating a bricks-and-mortar facility, with advice on everything from cost projections to financing options and the many other steps required to bring a new school to life.
This August, we highlighted LISC's creative placemaking work in locales across the country, funded in large part by a grant from The Kresge Foundation. Here's a roundup of all the stories you might have missed.